Thu | Aug 24, 2017

Lawyer files for injunction to stop magisterial recount

Published:Saturday | March 12, 2016 | 3:00 AMAdrian Frater

Western Bureau:

Hugh Wildman, the attorney representing the Jamaica Labour Party's (JLP) Homer Davis in the magisterial recount of ballots cast in Southern St James in the recent general election, has filed for an injunction in the Supreme Court, citing grave jurisdictional errors on the part of Presiding Magistrate Ann-Marie Granger.

"It is my firm belief that the magistrate, in counting the ballots, especially PD (polling division) 31, committed grave jurisdictional errors. She ought not to have counted those ballots, and pursuant to that error, I have just served a copy of an application which will be heard (today) at 11 a.m., seeking to stay the magisterial recount," Wildman told the media at the end of yesterday's third day of counting.

ACTION TAKEN

"I have actually taken out action against the magistrate to prevent her from continuing the count until this matter is determined in the Supreme Court."

The magisterial recount was initiated by Davis after the People's National Party's (PNP) Derrick Kellier was declared the winner at the end of the preliminary count, which followed the February 25 election. The National Democratic Movement's Ras Astor Black and the Marcus Garvey Progressive Party's Joseph Hilton also contested the seat.

Wildman's court action stems from the court's rejection of his application to exclude ballots that did not have the presiding officer's initials or the polling date on them. In denying his request, the attorney is contending that the magistrate overstepped her jurisdiction by allowing the disputed ballots.

However, in explaining her decision to reject Wildman's request, Granger said she was satisfied that the disputed ballots were properly supplied by the presiding officer.